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B68/1994 ISSUE OF 1995 PENSIONER CONCESSION CARD

Document

DATE OF ISSUE:  30 DECEMBER 1994

ISSUE OF 1995 PENSIONER CONCESSION CARD

1.INTRODUCTION

1.1The purpose of this Departmental Instruction is to provide information about the issue of the 1995 Pensioner Concession Card (PCC).

2.BACKGROUND

2.1The PCC is issued by the Commonwealth Government to all service pensioners to prove eligibility for a range of Commonwealth, State/Territory and Local Government benefits and concessions.

2.2The original PCC was issued for 1994 as a plastic laminate card which was pushed out from the carrier.  There were initial problems producing the laminated cardboard card and it was not a quality card.  The 1995 PCC will be a plastic card, tipped face down onto a carrier.  Travel vouchers are attached to the carrier for all States, the Northern Territory and the Australian Capital Territory.

2.3During 1994, ongoing issues of new and replacement PCCs have been achieved through a system of weekly issues by a contractor and, in some cases, by manually prepared cards issued over the counter.  In the case of PCCs issued manually through Branch offices, no record of these issues is stored on the system.

3.TARGET POPULATION

3.1All service pensioners are entitled to a PCC from DVA if resident in Australia.  A small number of Fringe Benefit 'saved' cases also qualify.  A service pensioner is a:

  • veteran in receipt of either an age service pension or an invalidity service pension;

  • spouse/partner of a veteran in receipt of a partner service pension; or

  • carer, in receipt of a carer service pension.

3.2Approximately 350,000 service pensioners will receive a 1995 PCC.  The approximate numbers in each State/Territory for the bulk issue in December 1994 are as follows:

NSW/ACT115,500

VIC80,200

QLD70,400

SA/NT35,350

WA32,850

TAS15,700

3.3A further bulk issue will be made in March to issue PCCs to war widow/ers who transfer from DSS to DVA to receive Income Support Supplement and those widowed/separated partners of veteran Service Pensioners who will receive Service Pension from DVA at the Standard Rate.  These clients will not receive concession vouchers with their PCC if they have already received a PCC from DSS for 1995, if they have been issued with a TC1, or if they are a female veteran entitled to a service pension in their own right and have already received a PCC with vouchers from DVA.

4.CHANGES

4.1The major change for the 1995 PCC will be that the card will be a plastic card instead of the laminated cardboard card.  The increased quality and durability of the new card should significantly reduce the number of requests for replacement cards.

4.2There are changes to the details shown on the card and these are summarised as:

  • the format of the entitlement number has been changed to conform to the Health Insurance Commission requirements, ie the veteran has no suffix and the dependants have the suffix 'A', 'B' etc.;

  • the word 'blind' will be printed on the PCC for blind veterans with the non-pensioner spouse included as a dependent on the card;

  • the names of veterans' dependant children, up to 7 children, will be printed on the cards of both parents, including those in 'child care' cases;

  • vouchers will be produced in the bulk runs and for any new clients in 1995.  They will not be produced for replacements except for those requests resulting from the bulk run and only up to 31 January 1995; and

  • reissued cards will have an indicator 'R' under the year to indicate that they are replacement cards.

5.CARDS/CARRIERS

5.1General

5.1.1The 1995 PCC is a plastic card attached to a 150 gsm carrier which may also include removable concession vouchers.  The card/carrier/voucher units will be pre-printed with text and State and Departmental logos, and the carrier will be perforated to form up to four (4) tear off vouchers.

5.1.2Personalised client details will be provided to the contractor responsible for the final printing and despatching of the cards for the bulk run in December 1994, and initially for the ongoing weekly runs.  You will be notified of alternate arrangements for ongoing issues as soon as they are confirmed.  Only one side of the card/carrier unit will be printed in the 'personalisation' print run (ie, the back of the card and the front of the carrier).


5.2Card

5.2.1              The 1995 PCC is a solid core plastic card   The card will be pre-printed on both

sides and 'tipped' onto an A4/A3 continuous carrier with the back of the card

uppermost.The personalised printing is applied on one side (back) only and will include

the following details of the client:

  • the pensioner's name, address and entitlement number

    [1]

    The entitlement number for the veteran card holder does not have a suffix, but the spouse's suffix is 'A' and suffixes for the dependent children are in alpha order from 'B' onwards.

    [1] (go back)
    ;
  • the name of the spouse and up to seven

    [2]

    If there are more than 7 children a second card will be issued.  The name(s) of dependent children will be recorded on both the veteran's and spouse's cards.

    [2] (go back)
    other dependents (the names are truncated to 9 characters) and their entitlement numbers .  The first four names will appear in the first column, and up to four additional names in a second column on the card;
  • Date of Grant: (of fringe benefits)

    [3]

    In the case of clients who gained eligibility for fringe benefits prior to 1984 the date recorded will be 1 January 1984.  Those who gained eligibility after 1 January 1984 will have the actual fringe benefits eligibility date recorded.

    [3] (go back)
    ;and
  • Expiry Date: will be 31/12/95 for all PCCs issued for 1995.

5.3Carrier

5.3.1For the bulk issue, the carrier will be 150gsm, with a perforated section at the bottom to form vouchers.   Weekly issues will be to the same format, though the location of vouchers and printed information may change.

5.3.2              The personalised printing of the carrier will include information relating to the client, including:

  • Name and postal address (positioned to be visible through a window in the envelope);

  • DVA Branch address (positioned to be visible in another smaller window in the envelope);

  • text, including State specific text, to be printed on State specific stock.  A serial number on the stock will indicate the State;

  • contact phone number(s) for further information appropriate to the client's postal address.  For clients in border towns, the contact phone numbers for the 1995 PCC will be determined by the client's State address.

5.4Vouchers

5.4.1              The number of vouchers attached to the carriers will vary with each State/Territory, up to a maximum of four vouchers, able to be separated from the carrier by perforations.  As for 1994, the vouchers will include the pensioner's name and entitlement number, and in the case of Tasmania will also contain the pensioner's address.

5.4.2              With the exception of the Northern Territory, all the vouchers will be personalised at the same time that the card is personalised.  No personalised information is included in the voucher section of the NT carrier.  Some details on the ACT travel vouchers will differ from that previously shown in 1994, when NSW travel vouchers were issued.

6.REPLACEMENT TRAVEL VOUCHERS

6.1All card holders are entitled to one issue of vouchers for their residential State each calendar year.  The only exception to this rule is where a card holder transfers to another State or to the ACT.  New grants of service pension where clients have previously received a PCC with vouchers in the same calendar year will not receive concession vouchers on reissue of the PCC, except for the State transfers.

6.2Any client requiring a replacement voucher after the end of January 1995 will have to apply directly to the State Government authority responsible for the concession.  This will include Western Australia, where previously replacement vouchers were issued by DVA.  The concession vouchers provided with the PCC confer a State/Territory provided concession and their replacement is a State/Territory responsibility.  The Department issues concession vouchers on the State/Territory(s) behalf when it conducts bulk runs and when a new entitlement is established.  Replacement concession vouchers are not to be issued by DVA under any circumstances.

7.FREQUENCY OF ISSUE

7.1Following the bulk issue of the 1995 PCCs in December 1994, the contractor will process ongoing, new and replacement cards on a weekly basis, unless a more frequent issue is indicated.

7.2It is planned to install printers in each Branch Office, to enable local overnight printing of new and replacement PCCs as soon as possible in 1995.  Once local printing is operational, all cards will be issued through the State's local printer which will be connected to the mainframe system.  There are to be no manual issues of the 1995 PCC.

8.CLIENTS NOT ELIGIBLE FOR A PCC

8.1Certain DVA clients are not eligible to receive a PCC.  These are:

  • Overseas clients, and

  • Adequate means of support (AMS) recipients, (unless they have some other entitlement).


9.CLIENTS NOT ISSUED WITH A DVA PCC

9.1DSS will issue 1995 PCCs for Working Rule B widows and war widow/ers with DSS entitlement.  The war widow/ers will begin receiving Income Support Supplement from DVA from 20 March 1995 and will be issued with a DVA PCC at that time.  These clients will not receive concession vouchers with their PCC.

9.2Travel concessions for war widow/ers who are not eligible for a PCC will be the subject of a separate Departmental Instruction.

10.BULK ISSUE FOR BORDER TOWN CASES

10.1All PCCs will be printed on card/carrier stock specific to the State/Territory in which the client lives.  The PCC with its associated entitlements including travel vouchers will be valid for the State/Territory corresponding to the clients address.

11.SPECIAL ISSUE CASES

11.1Special Register

11.1.1Special register cases will be run at the end of the bulk run for each State/Territory and forwarded to the Branch Offices for checking and despatch.  These cases include clients on manual rates, eg hardship, PLS, carers, war widows in receipt of frozen rate service pension and FB saved cases etc.

11.2Emergency Issues

11.2.1There will be no facility for over the counter issues of the PCC in 1995.  The current system of issuing cards over the counter has resulted in a situation where manual issues, meant for genuine emergencies, have not been recorded on the client's card history and has resulted in a large number of cards not being accounted for.

11.2.2 It is hoped to supply all Branch Offices with their own dedicated printers early in 1995 to produce new and replacement PCCs (except for the bulk issues), on a daily basis.  Printing will be overnight and Branch Offices will be responsible for mailing the PCCs each day.  The issue of a PCC is not to be attempted using any other means than the printer supplied for that purpose.

11.3Non-custodial Parents

11.3.1Manual issues are not required in 1995, for non-custodial parents, as the veteran's dependant children will be listed on the card issued to the non-custodial parent.

11.4Carers

11.4.1Carers will be issued with 1995 PCCs automatically.

11.5Fringe Benefits 'Saved' Cases

11.5.1Fringe Benefits 'saved' cases will be included in the bulk issue of the PCC.  However, a reissue of the PCC for FB 'saved' clients on nil rate of pension can only be done manually.  A request has been made to Systems to have these cases automatically recorded as eligible.

12.ISSUE REPORTS

12.1Branch offices will not receive reports for the bulk issue, but will be provided with the following listings of cases:

  • Carers; and

  • Clients who did not receive a PCC and the reason, eg clients with an overseas address.

12.2Where clients are issued a second replacement card , 'R' code, this will generate a report to the Branch.

13.INSERTS

13.1A magnetic refrigerator calendar will be included with the 1995 bulk issue of PCCs and with new cards produced as part of the ongoing processing.  Stocks will be also be supplied to the Branch Offices to include with PCCs issued from there, once the local printing is established.  An leaflet 'Australia Remembers" comemorating the 50th anniversary of the end of World War 11 is also included with the card.

14.TIMEFRAME

14.1Processing of the bulk issue of approximately 350,000 1995 PCCs will commence on 5 December 1994, following the extract of client data on the weekend of 3-4 December.  Data will be extracted and transmitted to the contractor for new clients on the weekends 10-11 and 17-18 December 1994.  The runs for the weeks ending 23 December and 30 December 1994 will be processed on 3 January 1995.  Regular weekly extracts will recommence on the weekend of 7-8 January, with processing of cards early the following week.

14.2In December, pensioners who become eligible for a PCC will still be issued with a 1994 PCC with vouchers for 1994 up to and including 16 December 1994.  After this date branches will issue new/replacement 1994 cards manually.

15.DVA SYSTEMS

15.1.On-line screen changes

15.1.1The only on-line screen change requested for the 1995 PCC issue is to change the EC.PC screen to record a date of issue of each card.

16.AUDIT TRAIL

16.1The PCC is an accountable document and the receipt and issue must be controlled in accordance with Treasury directions.

16.2Sequential numbers will be recorded on the top back of the carriers for the bulk issue and ongoing issue cards.  Non-personalised base stock supplied to Branch Offices will include the sequential numbers, and be on continuous sheeting.

16.3The Branch Offices are responsible for the control of locally issued PCCs.  A register should be maintained and include the first and last card card number for each print run.  The register should list those cards destroyed or spoilt in each print run and should provide a complete list of cards, for audit purposes.

17.LOSS OF ELIGIBILITY

17.1Some cards will inevitably be issued to clients who have lost eligibility.  Communication, Operations and Review Section will ask for a data run listing all clients, by State, who have lost PCC eligibility in the period 3-9 December 1994.  If possible the cards for non-entitled clients will be pulled from the print run.  Alternatively, Branch officers will be asked to recall the cards.

18.EVALUATION

18.1Central Office will monitor the ongoing demand for new and replacement PCCs.  Branch Offices are asked to seek feedback from clients on the quality and durability of the plastic format of the PCC.

19.CONTACT OFFICERS

Paul McBowAnnette SmithMary Martin

Assistant DirectorProject OfficerProject Officer

06 289 640806 289 473906 289 6743

DAVID MACKRELL

ASSISTANT SECRETARY

INCOME SUPPORT BRANCH